BIRDLAND THEATER will present the return of living legend Marilyn Maye for a special seven-show holiday engagement from Thursday, December 29 through Sunday, January 1, including the “New Year’s Eve Extravaganza!” on Saturday, December 31. Hailed as “an ageless dynamo” by The New York Times, Ms. Maye will celebrate the holidays in style, backed by an all-star ensemble. As usual, her trademark high-energy shows will feature beloved standards and unexpected musical treats. Tickets range from $40 to $150. Birdland is located at 315 West 44th Street in New York.
Marilyn Maye is a highly-praised singer, actress, director, arranger, educator, and Grammy Award-nominated recording artist. Ms. Maye appeared 76 times on “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson,” the record for a singer. His usual accolade for her came after one of her show-stopping appearances on the program, when he turned to his audience of millions and said, “And that, young singers, is the way it’s done.” She was “discovered” by Steve Allen who presented her various times to his national television audience. That led her to an RCA recording contract, seven albums and 34 singles.
Her place in American music history was assured when the Smithsonian Institution selected her recording “Too Late Now” for their album one of the 110 Best American Compositions of the Twentieth Century. Ms. Maye performs many symphony and big-band concerts throughout the United States. Her two appearances with the New York Pops at Carnegie Hall for tributes to Stephen Sondheim and Frank Loesser.
In the Wall Street Journal, Will Friedwald wrote, “When going to hear Marilyn Maye, you’ll find on one side of the room are the Broadway and cabaret people, who tend to like their singing big and theatrical, with a lot of drama and stage presence. On the other side is the jazz crowd, who want everything hip and cool and understated, and will split the scene if anything doesn’t swing. Ms. Maye is the only pop-song diva working today who can satisfy both crowds at once.”
She recently performed on NBC-TV’s “Harry” with Harry Connick Jr., and was featured twice on “CBS Sunday Morning” with Mo Rocca.
BIRDLAND THEATER will present Marilyn Maye fromThursday, December 29 through Sunday, January 1. For the performances on December 29 (8:30 PM), December 30 (7:00 PM and 9:30 PM), and January 1 (7:00 PM and 9:30 PM), the cover charge is $50 for tables and $40 for the bar. On New Year’s Eve, there are shows at 7:00 PM and 11:00 PM and the cover charge is $75-150 for tables and $45 for the bar. For the 11:00 PM show, a complimentary glass of champagne is included for the midnight toast. All performances have a $20 food and beverage minimum. Birdland Theater is located downstairs at Birdland Jazz Club, 315 West 44th Street (between 8th and 9th Avenues) in Manhattan.For reservations, please call (212) 581-3080 or visit www.BirdlandJazz.com. In compliance with New York City rules for indoor activities, Birdland requires proof of vaccination or a verified medical exemption from all customers, staff, and performers.
UPCOMING HIGHLIGHTS AT BIRDLAND THEATER AND BIRDLAND JAZZ CLUB
Every Monday at 9:30 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Jim Caruso’s Cast Party
“Jim Caruso’s Cast Party,” a New York institution for almost two decades, is a wildly popular weekly open mic night/variety show that has brought a sprinkling of Broadway glitz and urbane wit to Birdland since 2004. Called “show-business heaven” by The New York Times and “the gold-standard of open mic nights” by The Wall Street Journal, “Cast Party” will take advantage of the city’s post-pandemic nightlife renaissance to keep presenting a potent mix of Broadway stars, jazz swingers and cabaret legends, in addition to new faces and rising talent from every genre. The buoyant, sharp and charming Caruso guides the entire affair, while musical genius Billy Stritch (Liza Minnelli, Tony Bennett) holds court at the ivories and leads the Cast Party Symphony Orchestra (Steve Doyle on bass and Daniel Glass on drums).
$30 + $20 food/drink minimum
Every Saturday at 5:30 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Eric Comstock & Barbara Fasano
Hailed as “the truest heir to Bobby Short” in The New York Times, pianist/singer Eric Comstock returns to Birdland with star bassist/composer Sean Smith with songs by everyone from George Gershwin to George Harrison. These two masters met on the Off-Broadway hit Our Sinatra (which Eric co-wrote) and have since worked separately and together around the world. Vocalist Barbara Fasano joins them at Birdland for a swinging Saturday supper where the music and stories are equally great. Sean Smith has been an integral part of the international jazz scene for over 25 years, and has performed with Gerry Mulligan, Phil Woods, Benny Carter, Art Farmer, Flip Phillips, Clark Terry and many others. Barbara Fasano has been praised as “a gorgeous, soulful singer who has an actor’s intensity in whatever she sings” by The New York Post and “a lyrically sensitive interpreter” by The New York Times. Her latest album Busy Being Free is the recipient of the MAC Award for “Major Recording of the Year.”
$30 + $20 food/drink minimum
December 9-11 (Friday-Sunday) 7:00 & 9:30 PM – Birdland Theater
Carole J. Bufford – “Vintage Pop!”
Vocalist Carole J. Bufford will celebrate the New York debut of her concert “Vintage Pop!” This engagement follows successful shows in London, Palm Springs, Los Angeles, San Diego, Florida, and beyond. “Vintage Pop!” travels by decade, from the 1920s to the 1980s, exploring how the style and sound of pop music developed over the years. With fresh takes on these multi-generational songs, expect an evening of powerhouse vocals, stories behind the music, and Bufford’s inimitable delivery of songs you love and perhaps a few new discoveries. The show features music made famous by Judy Garland, Sophie Tucker, Louis Armstrong, Jerry Lee Lewis, Elvis Presley, The Animals, The Beatles, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Sting, Tina Turner, Prince and more. Bufford has become one of the most sought-after performers on the American vintage pop and cabaret scene. Her shows include “Speak Easy” (featuring the Grammy Award-winning Vince Giordano & The Nighthawks), “Come Together,” and “You Don’t Own Me.” She currently tours with her solo shows as well as with symphonies across the country. Carole is also the recipient of BroadwayWorld’s Vocalist of the Year award and the recent Gold Medal winner of the American Traditions Vocal Competition.
$30 tables / $30 bar + $20 food/drink minimum
December 12 (Monday) 7:00 PM– Birdland Jazz Club
James Barbour – “Annual Holiday Concert”
When James Barbour returns with his annual holiday concert, the audience will be entertained with incredible music and the warmth of the season. As he does every year, James and his surprise guests from the Broadway stage will help ring in the holiday season. James was nominated for the Drama Desk, Drama League and Outer Critics Awards for Best Actor in a Musical for his portrayal of Sydney Carton in the Broadway musical version of A Tale of Two Cities. He has starred on Broadway in such award-winning shows as Stephen Sondheim’s Assassins, Disney’s Beauty and the Beast as The Beast, Carousel as Billy Bigelow, Urinetown as Officer Lockstock, and Jane Eyreas as Edward Rocheste (Drama League Award nomination). He also appeared in the Broadway production of Cyrano and the national tour of The Secret Garden. His television credits range from the pilots of “The District,” “Just Shoot Me” and “Flashpoint” to appearances on “Sex and the City,” “Ed,” “That’s Life,” “Some Enchanted Evening: Celebrating Oscar Hammerstein” (PBS),”“Beauty and the Beast: A Concert on Ice” (CBS), the PBS mini-series “American Experience: John & Abigail Adams” (playing Thomas Jefferson) and the film version of “A Tale of Two Cities” in concert for public television.
$45 tables / $45 bar + $20 food/drink minimum
December 12 (Monday) 8:30 PM– Birdland Theater
Edmund Bagnell – “Home For The Holidays”
Through music and humor, singer and violinist Edmund Bagnell shares his heartfelt and humorous recipe for a perfectly imperfect holiday season. Edmund will be joined on stage by musical director/pianist Mark Hartman and special guest Lisa Boccuzzi. Bagnell is a diverse artist, having performed as an actor, violinist, singer, and 1st violinist and singer in the internationally touring string quartet Well Strung, which released three chart-topping albums in the classical crossover genre and performed three times on the “Today” show. As an actor, Edmund was cast as Tobias in the national tour of John Doyle’s staging of Sweeney Todd, which led to a wide variety of acting roles. In 2019, he premiered and toured internationally with his solo one-man show, “He Plays the Violin.” In 2020, he released his first solo album, Christmas at Home, which was included on several best of lists including USA Today. This past summer, Edmund debuted his second solo show, “Happy Days Are Here Again,” and in the fall he released a new EP,The Road, which includes the original songs “The Water” and “The Road.”
$30 tables / $30 bar + $20 food/drink minimum
December 19 (Monday) 7:00 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Karen Mason – “Christmas! Christmas! Christmas!”
Mason returns to the club for her legendary holiday show “Christmas! Christmas! Christmas!” featuring unique interpretations of old and new holiday classics. Sassy, brassy, and tinged with confessional monologues, this show includes a slinky arrangement of “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town,” a heartfelt “I’ll Be Home For Christmas,” and many more. The evening is directed by Barry Kleinbort; with musical direction by Christopher Denny on piano, and Tom Hubbard on bass. Mason was recently seen playing Mrs. Marsh on Ryan Murphy’s “Halston” on Netflix. On tour, was last seen as Madame Giry in the North American premiere ofLove Never Dies (Andrew Lloyd Webber’s sequel to The Phantom of the Opera). On Broadway, she starred in Wonderland, and originated the role of Tanya in Mamma Mia! (2002 Drama Desk nomination). Her other leading roles include Norma Desmond in Sunset Boulevard on Broadway and in Los Angeles for three years; Velma von Tussel in the Broadway company of Hairspray; “Monotony” singer and Mazeppa in Jerome Robbins’ Broadway. She is a14-time MAC Award winner, and was the recipient of the 2019 MAC Lifetime Achievement Award.
$40 tables / $40 bar + $20 food/drink minimum
December 20-25 (Tuesday-Sunday) 5:30 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
“A Swinging Birdland Christmas” with Klea Blackhurst, Jim Caruso & Billy Stritch
The 13th year of “A Swinging Birdland Christmas” will star Birdland regulars Klea Blackhurst, Jim Caruso and Billy Stritch. The trio is also releasing a Deluxe Edition of their popular album, “Christmas at Birdland,” produced by Wayne Haun on the Club44 Records label. In the tradition of beloved seasonal specials, Blackhurst, Caruso and Stritch perform swinging arrangements of “The Christmas Waltz,” Kay Thompson’s “The Holiday Season,” “Sleigh Ride,” “I’ve Got My Love to Keep Me Warm,” “Snow,” and “It Happened In Sun Valley,” among other favorites. The show will also include a musical tribute to Birdland regular Freddy Cole, who was also a holiday tradition. The singers will be joined by Steve Doyle on bass and Daniel Glass on drums.
$30 cover, $10 food/drink minimum
December 26 (Monday) 5:30 PM, 8:00 PM and 10:00 PM – Birdland Jazz Club
Our Sinatra: A Musical Celebration
Our Sinatra returns to Birdland to celebrate the music of Frank Sinatra. Three performers playfully interact with one another, sharing their joy and passion for this great music as they lovingly sing the hits of Sinatra, individually and in combination, taking the audience back to relive memories. The show includes over 50 songs interspersed with witty banter and humor. The show covers Sinatra’s entire musical cannon from the classic ballads of the ‘40s to the saloon and torch songs, the ‘50s and ‘60s swingers and the all-time hits. Our Sinatra steers clear of imitation and impersonation as these accomplished performers deliver the great music of Sinatra. The New York Times calls Our Sinatra “an utterly winning tribute to Ol’ Blue Eyes” and “superior entertainment.” After two sold-out national tours, and a recent successful limited engagement at the Birdland, Our Sinatra will celebrate 1500 performances Off Broadway and its 20th anniversary. Directed by Kurt Stamm, the production team also includes Richard Maltby, Jr. (Production Supervisor).
$40 tables / $30 bar + $20 food/drink minimum